Home > Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, immigration, small business and entrepreneurship, technology and internet > Then and Now: America’s New Immigrant Entrepreneurs, Part VII

Then and Now: America’s New Immigrant Entrepreneurs, Part VII

November 20, 2012

Then and Now: America’s New Immigrant Entrepreneurs, Part VII (PDF)
Source: Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation

This study examined the complex relationships between immigration and economic development in an increasingly globalized economy. It sought to update the findings of the 2007 report by analyzing whether changes in the pace of immigrant entrepreneurship have occurred. Out of a total of 107,819 engineering and technology companies founded in the last six years, it examined a random sample of 1,882 companies to identify whether a key founder was foreign-born.

The study found that, for the first time in decades, the growth rate of immigrant-founded companies has stagnated, if not declined. In comparison with previous decades of increasing immigrant-led entrepreneurism, the last seven years has witnessed a flattening out of this trend. The proportion of immigrant-founded companies nationwide has dropped from 25.3 percent to 24.3 percent since 2005. While the margins of error of these numbers overlap, they nonetheless indicate that immigrant-founded companies’ dynamic period of expansion has come to an end.

We also performed a special analysis of Silicon Valley, which is widely known as the international hub for technological development and innovation. The findings indicate that 43.9 percent of Silicon Valley startups founded in the last seven years had at least one key founder who was an immigrant. This represents a notable drop in immigrant-founded companies since 2005, when 52.4 percent of Silicon Valley startups were immigrant-founded.

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